rattray marsh

This hidden boardwalk near Toronto overlooks a lush marsh

Less than 30 minutes from Toronto is a hidden paradise that serves as the perfect spot to escape the city for a couple hours. Nestled along the Mississauga shoreline, you'll find Rattray Marsh Conservation Area that has become best known for its stunning raised boardwalk.

Although Rattray Marsh is a pretty popular destination in the summer months due to its massive stone beach along the 90 acres of Lake Ontario, it definitely shouldn't be missed in the fall due to the spectacular colours that will be reflecting off the calm waters in just a few weeks.

As the last remaining lakefront marsh between Toronto and Burlington, this environmentally important wetland offers a unique escape just minutes from downtown Mississauga.

Due to the short distance from Toronto, the Rattray Marsh hiking trails are the ideal fall destination for those of us who want to enjoy untouched nature, but aren't up for long drive to cottage country. 

Inside the conservation area, there are three nature trails to choose from that are all pretty easy to hike, so it's definitely possible to hit all three when you visit (the longest trail is only two kilometres long).

The area is also a hot spot for tons of wildlife - including beavers, swans, and families of deer - who have become famous all over Instagram. 

Other notable parks to check out that are all within a few minutes from one another are the Jack Darling Memorial Park (with an off-leash dog park) and Erindale Park.

Rattray Marsh Conservation Area has ample parking available, (although the lot can get extremely busy on weekends) and is open year-round. 

Lead photo by family happy trails

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